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Publications (4)38.76 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: A functional decline of brain regions underlying memory processing represents a hallmark of cognitive aging. Although a rich literature documents age-related differences in several memory domains, the effect of aging on networks that underlie multiple memory processes has been relatively unexplored. Here we used functional magnetic resonance imaging during working memory and incidental episodic encoding memory to investigate patterns of age-related differences in activity and functional covariance patterns common across multiple memory domains. Relative to younger subjects, older subjects showed increased activation in left dorso-lateral prefrontal cortex along with decreased deactivation in the posterior cingulate. Older subjects showed greater functional covariance during both memory tasks in a set of regions that included a positive prefronto-parietal-occipital network as well as a negative network that spanned the default mode regions. These findings suggest that the memory process-invariant recruitment of brain regions within prefronto-parietal-occipital network increases with aging. Our results are in line with the dedifferentiation hypothesis of neurocognitive aging, thereby suggesting a decreased specialization of the brain networks supporting different memory networks.
    European Journal of Neuroscience 08/2012; · 3.75 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: To assess the association of cognitive dysfunction and depression with serum antibodies to N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA) receptor (anti-NR2) and analyze clinical and neuroimaging correlates in patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). Sixty patients underwent neurocognitive assessment, evaluation for depression with the Beck Depression Inventory II (BDI-II) and psychiatric interview (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition [DSM-IV] criteria), brain magnetic resonance imaging, and proton magnetic resonance spectroscopy imaging (1H-MRSI). Cognition was assessed in 5 domains: memory, attention/executive, visuospatial, motor, and psychomotor, and adjusted to each individual's best level of prior cognitive functioning estimated from the reading subtest of the Wide Range Achievement Test-3 (WRAT-3). Serum anti-NR2 antibodies were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay using a pentapeptide from the human NMDA receptor. Cognitive dysfunction was found in 28 of 60 patients (mild in 8, moderate in 20) before adjustment for WRAT-3 and in 35 of 60 patients (mild in 15, moderate in 11, and severe in 9) after adjustment for WRAT-3. The changes were most pronounced in the memory and visuospatial domains. There was no significant association between anti-NR2 antibody levels and cognition. On 1H-MRSI, patients with moderate or severe cognitive dysfunction had significantly higher choline:creatine ratios in the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and the white matter, compared with patients with mild or absent cognitive dysfunction. Anti-NR2 antibodies were significantly correlated with BDI scores; patients with BDI-II scores of > or =14 had higher serum levels of anti-NR2 antibodies (P = 0.005, 95% confidence interval 0.83, 4.31), and there was a trend toward higher anti-NR2 antibody levels among patients who fulfilled the DSM-IV criteria for major depression. Serum anti-NR2 antibodies are associated with depressive mood but not with cognitive dysfunction in SLE at a given time point. Larger longitudinal studies are needed to address the possible association between anti-NR2 antibodies and depression in SLE.
    Arthritis & Rheumatology 08/2006; 54(8):2505-14. · 7.48 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: This study was carried out to confirm prior evidence of an effect of a single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) in the metabotropic glutamate receptor 3 (GRM3) gene (a putative risk factor for schizophrenia) on measures of N-acetylaspartate in healthy comparison subjects. Fifty-four carefully screened healthy volunteers genotyped at SNP rs6465084 underwent magnetic resonance spectroscopic imaging (MRSI) at 3 T and selected neuropsychological testing. The A/A genotype group exhibited a significant reduction of N-acetylaspartate/creatine levels in the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex compared to the G carriers. A tendency in the same direction was seen in the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and in the white matter adjacent to the prefrontal cortex. These findings provide further evidence that GRM3 affects prefrontal function and that variation in GRM3, monitored by SNP rs6465084, affects GRM3 function.
    American Journal of Psychiatry 05/2006; 163(4):740-2. · 14.72 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Williams syndrome (WS), caused by microdeletion of some 21 genes on chromosome 7q11.23, is characterized by dysmorphic features, mental retardation or learning difficulties, elastin arteriopathy, and striking neurocognitive and social-behavioral abnormalities. Recent studies of murine knockouts of key genes in the microdeleted region, LIM kinase 1 (LIMK1) and cytoplasmatic linker protein 2 (CYLN2), demonstrated significant functional and metabolic abnormalities, but grossly normal structure, in the hippocampal formation (HF). Furthermore, deficits in spatial navigation and long-term memory, major cognitive domains dependent on hippocampal function, have been described in WS. We used multimodal neuroimaging to characterize hippocampal structure, function, and metabolic integrity in 12 participants with WS and 12 age-, sex-, and IQ-matched healthy controls. PET and functional MRI studies showed profound reduction in resting blood flow and absent differential response to visual stimuli in the anterior HF in WS. Spectroscopic measures of N-acetyl aspartate, considered a marker of synaptic activity, were reduced. Hippocampal size was preserved, but subtle alterations in shape were present. These data demonstrate abnormalities in HF in WS in agreement with murine models, implicate LIMK1 and CYLN2 in human hippocampal function, and suggest that hippocampal dysfunction may contribute to neurocognitive abnormalities in WS.
    Journal of Clinical Investigation 08/2005; 115(7):1888-95. · 12.81 Impact Factor